Be aware of diabetes signs

Elanor Tull who suffers from diabetes and her mum Hazel. March 28th 2013 E13254P
Elanor Tull who suffers from diabetes and her mum Hazel. March 28th 2013 E13254P

Chocolate is a big part of Easter for many children and 13-year-old diabetes sufferer Elanor Tull was no different.

Elanor lives with her mum Hazel in Old Town Eastbourne and has suffered from type 1 diabetes for the past three years.

Hazel says the right diagnosis and correct treatment is key in helping children with diabetes live an ordinary life.

The 47-year-old mum said, “If parents are worried they shoul dtake their child to the doctor.

“The test is very simple and very quick and then once it has been diagnosed the child can start recieveing treatment.

“Children especially can feel very ill before it is treated and it is a real relief when they get the treatment and start feeling so much better.”

Jill Steaton, south east regional manager for Diabetes UK, says some children in Britian are not getting the care they need.

She siad, “The fact that so many people with type 1 diabetes are doing less well than they should is at least partly the consequence of the quality of healthcare for children with the condition.

“Our type 1 essentials for children and young people sets out the care every child with type 1 diabetes should be getting but, many children do not get this care.”

Despite this point of view from the charity, Hazel says care for Elanor has changed and improved over the past three years.

Young Elanor now uses an insulin pump instead of injections.

Hazel said, “The pump has really made a big difference. It monitors her levels and pumps insulin all through the day.

“This is instead of between six to eight injections everyday.”

And Elanor was able to enjoy some choclate treats over the Easter period - despite a commonly held belief that diabetes sufferers must avoid sugar.

Hazel said, “I think people misunderstand type 1 diabetes. Although we have to carb count all the time, they can eat what they want.

“I think people think they aren’t allowed things but that is not always the case.”

Hazel says support is available once a child has been diagnosed but explains detecting the syptoms and getting a diagnosis is key.